Gdansk dates back to the 9th century and is referred to as the Pearl of the North. From the very beginning Gdansk was an important port on the Baltic Sea and in 1361 it became a member of the Hanseatic League. The Golden Age of the city was from the 15th through the 18th centuries. During WWII Gdansk was demolished but it was rebuilt with the support of rich ship merchants.
Stroll along the main street called Dluga Street with a stop to see the Golden Gate. This 17th century old town entry gate was built in the Renaissance style. The famous Neptune Fountain dating from 1613 can also be found on this street, symbolizing the bond between the city and the sea. Guests can enjoy lunch in one of our recommended restaurants in Gdansk.
Enjoy a visit to the Artus Hall Court which was the city’s Merchant Guild and also Poland’s Stock Exchange. The Dwor Artusa was in many respects the epicenter of Gdansk’s mercantile galaxy. Named after the mythical British King Arthur, it provided an arena for the movers and shakers of Gdansk to strut their stuff in knightly style. The enterprise was inspired by the courts of King Arthur, and the merchants endeavored to emulate the chivalrous, brotherly ideals that were espoused in the Arthurian legends. Originally founded in 1350, the edifice got a sumptuous baroque make-over in the seventeenth century, although nearly all was lost in 1945. Thankfully, large sections of the interior had been spirited away, and these are amongst the highpoints of this splendidly reconstructed treasure. Some of the windows on the building are as tall as the three-story buildings nearby. Amazingly this building was not destroyed in the war.
Shipyard in Gdansk
This is a 20th century historical tour. Here you can get acquainted with the history and culture of one of the countries in the former Soviet block, learn the history of the social reforms and revolution in Poland and understand why everything began right here in Gdansk. See the places where Lech Walesa jumped over the gate to join the shipyard workers on strike, has his Office in Gdansk, fragments of the historical Berlin Wall, visit interesting exhibitions.
Visit to the European “Solidarity” Centre is a moving encounter with the past, which influenced the recent history of Europe.
ECS has a permanent exhibition, dedicated to the history of Solidarity and opposition movements that led to democratic changes across Central and Eastern Europe.
The exhibition covers an area of nearly three thousand sq. meters on the first and second floor.
Display is both traditional, as well as a multimedial. Visitors can see historical objects, they also have access to videos with photographs, film archives, documents, maps, biographies, calendars, and others.
The area and buildings of a former Army Transit Storeroom according to the Resolution of the President of Poland from 22 Aug 2003 was acknowledged as a monument of history: 'The Battlefield on Westerplatte’. The aim of the monument of history protection is preservation of unique historical values, territory material and immaterial values, which symbolize heroism and bravery of Polish soldiers during the Second World War – the biggest war of the 20th century (Dz U. Nr 148 poz. 1448).
Among many famous battlefields of the Second World War on Polish territory only Westerplatte retained its original name. Even communists, who are not known to be sentimental and care about pre-war history, didn’t dare to polonize it and at the same time destroy a symbol of bravery, which the peninsula’s defence was from the very beginning. However, they did a lot to falsify a picture of events and to irreversibly destroy the ground of historical battle.
Out of town:
The Polish Riviera: Sopot, Oliwa and Gdynia
Travel to Poland’s happy place, Sopot, where you can take in the sea air and relax on the longest wooden pier in Europe. A small fishing village until the 20th century, Gdynia was rapidly built into Poland’s largest and busiest sea port after World War I. As a result, it’s mainly a very modern city. The most significant older attraction is the 13th-century St. Michael the Archangel Church. Two museum ships in the harbor, a destroyer and a frigate, are also popular with visitors. Gdynia has a thriving cultural life and in September hosts the annual Polish Film Festival, sometimes called the “Polish Cannes.”
While it lacks the 1,000 year history of its better known neighbor, Gdynia is a wonderful example of a 20th century city with its construction covering the Art Deco period of the 20s and 30s, the Socialist era of post-war Europe and the modern designs of the post-communist Poland. The city can offer beautiful beaches and walks, some of the best restaurants and nightlife in the Tri-city as well as a fiercely proud population still shaped by the time not so long ago when Gdynia was viewed as the true Polish city on the coast.
In the afternoon, visit Sopot, situated 25 minutes drive from Gdansk.
Sopot, Poland’s most elegant seaside resort in eastern Pomerania, is close enough to Gdansk to allow for spontaneous sightseeing and shopping trips. In the first years of the 20th century, Sopot was a favorite spa of Emperor Wilhelm II of Germany. After World War I, the Casino of Sopot filled the coffers of the free city of Danzig. Wealthy aristocrats and citizens of Danzig, Berlin and Warsaw flocked to the still-existing Grand Hotel built in 1926.
Sopot’s main attraction is Europe’s longest wooden pier, 1,690 ft long and dating from 1928. The sandy beaches, sea promenades and a major wellness complex with a luxury hotel attract many visitors. Sopot also hosts the Sopot International Song Festival, Europe’s second largest after the Eurovision Song Contest.
We will also visit Oliwa, home to the twin-spired Cathedral that houses what was once the largest organ in the world.
Out Of town:
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